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Craig Peters




PostPosted: Wed 06 Jun, 2007 11:14 pm    Post subject: Edge to Flat Cuts Video         Reply with quote

Another video from the ARMA. It's bound to be controversial, but here it is: http://www.thearma.org/Videos/swordshow121.htm

Note: You need a video player that can run MP4 files! If you don't have one, you can download one here: http://www.download.com/3000-2139-10655434.html. You may also need a codec too, but the player will inform you and take you to where you can get one if that's the case.



Every cut from 360 degrees can be intercepted on the flat.
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Chris Lampe




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PostPosted: Thu 07 Jun, 2007 4:15 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Cool video! It's also nice to see the Albion practice longswords in action!
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Greg Coffman




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PostPosted: Thu 07 Jun, 2007 8:11 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Great video. I think QuickTIme can open the video fine. John Clements is a little bit hyper isn't he.
For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.
-Hebrews 4:12
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M. Eversberg II




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PostPosted: Thu 07 Jun, 2007 8:29 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I can't understand a word they're saying -- it echos so badly.

M.

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Gary A. Chelette




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PostPosted: Thu 07 Jun, 2007 8:42 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Of what I know of ARMA and from what I have seen of them here in Texas, hummm...how do I say this?
They pose a lot.

Combat, real combat is very different.
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R Smith




Location: MI
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PostPosted: Thu 07 Jun, 2007 8:57 am    Post subject: Re: Edge to Flat Cuts Video         Reply with quote

Craig Peters wrote:


Every cut from 360 degrees can be intercepted on the flat.


Many things can be done but that does not make them correct or the only way.

"Those with wisdom loathe the one forced to defend." - Liechtenauer

Ars Gladii
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Jonathan Blair




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PostPosted: Thu 07 Jun, 2007 9:04 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Not again, please. Sad
"Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword." - The Lord Jesus Christ, from The Gospel According to Saint Matthew, chapter x, verse 34, Authorized Version of 1611
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Craig Peters




PostPosted: Thu 07 Jun, 2007 9:35 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I don't care how other people parry at this point. It's their perogative if they want to gradually or rapidly destroy their swords by making deliberate edge contact in a parry. I'm just here to point out that there's another way of doing things.
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Craig Peters




PostPosted: Thu 07 Jun, 2007 9:39 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Gary A. Chelette wrote:
Of what I know of ARMA and from what I have seen of them here in Texas, hummm...how do I say this?
They pose a lot.

Combat, real combat is very different.


Are you saying that not every ARMA member in Texas has impressive skill? If so, you're probably right. Are you saying that the attacks and counters cleanly delivered in drills are not that easy to perform in actual sparring or fighting? If so, you're also correct.

But if you're saying that the ARMA in general lacks skill in historic armed combat, and that we are all talk and no action, then these are no small words, and should be backed up by you willing engaging in free play against ARMA members to prove your point. Words without actions are hollow.
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Chad Arnow
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PostPosted: Thu 07 Jun, 2007 9:41 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Don't issue challenges or call people out. Don't put each other (or someone's organization) down. Act like adults or play somewhere else.
Happy

ChadA

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Craig Peters




PostPosted: Thu 07 Jun, 2007 10:05 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Also, note how efficient these defenses are in the video. Between Ochs, Hengen, Pflug, and Nebenhut on the left and right sides, you can essentially receive the cut while in the guard and deflect it. And, if you cannot transition into one of these guards, you can always counter cut and still finish edge on flat. As John points out, it literally takes more effort to get your edge into the line of attack to block it.
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R Smith




Location: MI
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PostPosted: Thu 07 Jun, 2007 10:28 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Craig Peters wrote:
Also, note how efficient these defenses are in the video. Between Ochs, Hengen, Pflug, and Nebenhut on the left and right sides, you can essentially receive the cut while in the guard and deflect it. And, if you cannot transition into one of these guards, you can always counter cut and still finish edge on flat. As John points out, it literally takes more effort to get your edge into the line of attack to block it.


In his opinion. There are differing opinions out there. To so strongly insist on only one possibility to the exclusion of all others creates conflict because there is no room given for discourse. When this happens people become defensive and stop listening. Nothing is gained for the WMA community other then making divisions.

"Those with wisdom loathe the one forced to defend." - Liechtenauer

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Randall Pleasant




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PostPosted: Thu 07 Jun, 2007 11:13 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Gary A. Chelette wrote:
Of what I know of ARMA and from what I have seen of them here in Texas, hummm...how do I say this?
They pose a lot.

Combat, real combat is very different.


Cary

Let me say first that althougth I am an ARMA member I don't speak for ARMA or any of its members. The following is only my personal opinions, views, and understandings.

There are many many ways in which I can describe ARMA, its training methods, and its members. However, "posing" is not a word I would ever use in regard to ARMA. Posing is a word I would use with acting, role playing, re-enactment, living history, and titles, none of which ARMA is associated with.

I do agree that real combat with swords would be a very different beast. Of course the problem we have today in our efforts to reconstruct these lost arts is that, neither you, I, or anyone else have ever seen or experienced real combat with swords (drunk buddies hitting each other with wall-hangers don't count). ARMA assumes that such combat in the past was fast, hard, quick, and of course very deadly. Therefore, ARMA's whole effort is to reconstruct these lost arts as close to that context as is physically, safely, morally and legally possible. That is why ARMA makes very clear that the application of a technique must not only match the text of the historical masters, the techniques must also work at full speed and at full power against an unwilling adversary.

Pose can also refer to attitude. Jake Norwood, the deputy director of ARMA, often says something similar to , "We all suck at these arts, some of us just suck less than others". I think that is a very health attitude to have in the reconstruction of these arts.

Ran Pleasant
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Randall Pleasant




Location: Flower Mound, Texas
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PostPosted: Thu 07 Jun, 2007 11:37 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

R Smith wrote:
In his opinion. There are differing opinions out there. To so strongly insist on only one possibility to the exclusion of all others creates conflict because there is no room given for discourse. When this happens people become defensive and stop listening. Nothing is gained for the WMA community other then making divisions.


Any interpretation of these arts is nothing more than the opinion of that person, be he John Clements, Christian Tobler, Jake Norwood, Terry Brown, Sean Hays, Bob Charron, etc., or yourself. Thus, you are correct in that what is shown in the video is nothing more than John Clement's interpretations of select principles and techniques of the historical masters. And there are indeed other opinions and interpretations of those same principles and techniques. The purpose of the video is to show ARMA members and any other people who care to listen with an open mind that all of the techinques shown can be performed in a very martially sound manner and without damaging one's blade while still matching the teachings of the historical masters. In regard to interpretations there is always room for discourse. Every interpretation should be heavily questioned and tested! However, in regard to what happens when two very thin sharp steel blade impact each other head-on, edge-on-edge at high speed there is no discourse because that is completely governed by the Laws of Physics.

Ran Pleasant
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Gary A. Chelette




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PostPosted: Thu 07 Jun, 2007 12:21 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Craig Peters wrote:

But if you're saying that the ARMA in general lacks skill in historic armed combat, and that we are all talk and no action, then these are no small words, and should be backed up by you willing engaging in free play against ARMA members to prove your point. Words without actions are hollow.


My apology.
I did not mean this quote as a general description of ARMA. My limited experience with "so called" members my have colored my perception here in Texas.
I could very well say the same thing about my own membership in the SCA. There are some branches (Kingdoms) I have been to and wonder how they ever got into the Society!
No , my friend, I do not belittle any group intentionally. Just a few individuals who are very young and very passionate to a point of fault.
Much like I was when I was their age. Big Grin

Please except this old man's apologie, Mon Ami.

Merci

Are you scared, Connor?
No, Cousin Dugal. I'm not!
Don't talk nonsense, man. I peed my kilt the first time I went into battle.
Oh, aye. Angus pees his kilt all the time!
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R Smith




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PostPosted: Thu 07 Jun, 2007 1:28 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Randall,
Thank you for your response to my statement.
I was on board with you until the last sentence. It seems like you just made the "we're right and everyone else is wrong" statement. I may be misinterpreting what you said due to the inability of the internet to convey true meaning well. If so then no worries.
Of course edges will get damaged in sparring, duelling, or on a long gone battlefield. The edge is the most fragile part of the sword and edge to edge makes for alot of concentrated force. The edge is a "force muliplier". For the Liechtenauer tradition I see no way to meet an attack with a serious counter attack with intent to hit the other person, in single time, without at least obliquely (45degree) making edge to edge contact. Key words are "with intent to hit the other person" i.e. my attack being my defense as well. No great damage is done to the sword's edge.
I understand and appreciate the fact that you guys are coming out against hard edge to edge parrying as used by stage combatants. Perhaps it is that idea carried too far in my opinion.
In a way I enjoy the absolutism that comes from ARMA because too many people pander to relativism in order to get along with others.

"Those with wisdom loathe the one forced to defend." - Liechtenauer

Ars Gladii
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Randall Pleasant




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PostPosted: Thu 07 Jun, 2007 2:49 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Mr. Smith

The last line was added just to point out the part of this issue (that serious damage can and will occur) that really is beyound any debate. Of course, we can debate things like is serious edge damage acceptable or at what angle is the likelyhood of serious damage decrease to an acceptable level, etc.

Ran Pleasant
ARMA DFW
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Michael Edelson




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PostPosted: Thu 07 Jun, 2007 7:09 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Again?? We're doing this again? Happy

I'd like to toss some familiar names out there to use for an example; Tony Alvarez, Toshishiro Obata, James Williams, etc.

Go ahead and try to parry one of their diagonal overhead cuts on the flat of your blade. Take time off of work in advance though. A month should do it, you'll be out of your cast by then. Happy

EDIT: Yes, I know that some cuts naturally fall onto the flat in some techniques, and in others, they naturally fall on the edge, and that NO cut is fully on the flat or edge, but some combination of both. The above is reference to zornhau and catching it on as much of the flat as is possible.

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Craig Peters




PostPosted: Thu 07 Jun, 2007 7:44 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Michael Edelson wrote:
Again?? We're doing this again? Happy

I'd like to toss some familiar names out there to use for an example; Tony Alvarez, Toshishiro Obata, James Williams, etc.

Go ahead and try to parry one of their diagonal overhead cuts on the flat of your blade. Take time off of work in advance though. A month should do it, you'll be out of your cast by then. Happy

EDIT: Yes, I know that some cuts naturally fall onto the flat in some techniques, and in others, they naturally fall on the edge, and that NO cut is fully on the flat or edge, but some combination of both. The above is reference to zornhau and catching it on as much of the flat as is possible.


Could you specify what you mean by this exactly?
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Michael Edelson




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PostPosted: Thu 07 Jun, 2007 9:31 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Craig Peters wrote:


Could you specify what you mean by this exactly?



No problem, Craig, but itís going to be long and boring, so remember you asked for itÖ Happy

Iím sure youíll agree that if you follow the teachings of the masters and execute the techniques without regard for edge placement (not implying thatís what they had in mind), then some techniques will have your sword meeting more edge on, and some more flat on. Again, thatís without any thought to where the edge is.

Now letís take a technique that involves more edge on edge contact, such as the zornhau, and apply a deliberate attempt to minimize this type of contact. How do we do that?

Physiologically speaking, there are only two practical ways.

1. Bend your wrists, bringing your flat to bear against the incoming cut.
2. Twist the grip in your hands, so that you are holding the sword sideways. Your wrists are straight, but the cross is almost perpendicular to your forearm, rather than parallel to it.

Option 1 is not worth discussing. If you meet a powerful strike with your wrists bent, you will either drop your sword or break your wrists. Imagine Toshishiro Obata striking you with sufficient power to put a big gash in a steel helmet. Your wrists will snap like dried twigs.

Option 2 is more interesting, because it seems as though your wrists are straight and your grip on the sword strong. If you look at just the position of your body, you do indeed have a strong grip. However, in this case the sword itself is working against you. The shape of a swordís handle tends to be oval, and even a thin waisted grip such as that of the Bayerisches longsword* has enough oval in it to rob you of a secure grip if held at an angle other than that for which it was intended. Furthermore, when held correctly**, the cross forms an integral part of your grip, and acts to bolster the sword in your hand by pressing against your hand and securing the sword in place.

Robbed of the support of proper grip, you are then forced to place your thumb on the blade to support it. You can see John Clements doing this in the video you posted. The problem with this is that your thumb now acts as the bolster, so whereas before the cross digging into the soft fleshy part of your hand was the worst you had to face, you now have a lot of painful pressure exerted on your thumb. If someone strikes you with a very powerful oberhau, and you attempt to execute a zornhau holding a sword this way, you stand a decent chance of breaking you thumb, or at the very least injuring it and weakening your grip on the sword and your ability to fight.

Youíre faced with a question: go ahead and take the nick on your 1/3Ē thick-at-the-strong longsword, or risk bodily harm, and consequent death.

In NYHFA, when asked about edge blocking by new students, I explain this idea. If they require further convincing, I ask them to parry my oberhau with the flat, and I strike with half power. I ask them if that hurt. Some usually get it right there, others say ďbut that wasnít so badĒ. I then up the power to 3/4, and that ends the discussion. Full power would break the thumb. Iím not saying Iím a super powerful swordsmanÖIím average. Physiology and physics are on my side though, so even I can convince people that deliberate flat parrying is not a good idea.

A great number of techniques, however, involve natural flat parries, ones that do not require you to hold the sword in an unnatural way. I am not against flat parries any more than I am for edge parries. Body mechanics and the efficient execution of a technique will dictate how I parry. Itís really that simple, if you let it be.



* I have a Munich now, so I can comment on how that sword feels. Thank you Albion! Happy

** The grip on a longsword is fluid and changes depending on what you are doing with it, but when meeting a powerful cut with zornhau, there are right and wrong ways to hold the sword.

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www.newyorklongsword.com

Byakkokan Dojo
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